Today's Reading - John 3 & 4
Having read these chapters again and again, I have discovered a message running below the stories that has emerged to me as an illustration of a faith walk. In John 3:1-21, Nicodemus begins the journey by seeking out Jesus so that he might learn more about Him. Jesus explains that to enter the kingdom of God, one must choose to believe in His Son. The rest of the chapter concerns John the Baptist, who has a great following of his own. However, because he believes that Jesus is the Messiah, he chooses to relinquish his own influence and to point his disciples and followers to Jesus. He yields himself to the omnipotence of Christ.
Chapter 4 begins with the story of the Samaritan woman at the well. Here, Jesus begins a dialogue with her and offers her living water. He makes her aware of the sin in her life and reveals to her that He is the Messiah. She excitedly returns to her town and invites others to see Jesus. Between the time the woman returns to her town and the time she comes back with the others, Jesus interjects a lesson to his disciples by telling them that even though one person might sow seed, it might be others who harvest the crop. The woman at the well came from Cana, the place where Jesus had performed his first public miracle by turning water into wine at a wedding. I’m sure that word of that event spread rapidly throughout Cana and that hearts and the minds of the people had already been prepared to believe. Thus, when the woman led her friends and neighbors to Jesus, a seed of interest and curiosity planted at a wedding was harvested, and many of them believed.
Jesus then left Cana but returned later to be met by an official begging him to heal his dying son whom he had left at home. He told Jesus that He need not go to his home. He had faith that Jesus could heal his son where he stood….and he did! On his way home, the man’s servants met him and said that his son had been healed whereupon the official and his entire household believed.
Although not always experienced in the following order, these scriptures portray several stages in a Christian journey toward the Kingdom of God. At the beginning of each step, there is a choice to be made.
Seeking, learning, trusting
Accepting the Living Waters that He offers
Acknowledging our sins
Deciding to put Christ before ourselves
Witnessing, testifying, bringing others to Christ
Putting our complete faith in Him
Are you actively seeking Christ and trying to learn more about Him?
Are you willing to acknowledge your sins before Jesus and to put Him before everything else in your life?
How long has it been since you have really been excited enough about Jesus to want to go out and bring others to church to learn more about Him?
Do you really have faith that you can trust God completely? If you don’t, what do you plan to do so that you can get to that point?
Ok, put down the Bible and go do it!
by Grace Weedman